From Curiosity to Christoformity

2020-08-24 | Kate Cogswell, Director of Women's Ministry

“Come and see.” John 1:39 NLT

 

In reading John 1:35-42, we find John the Baptist’s disciples expressing their curiosity about Jesus. They followed after Him, and He responded to them with an invitation: Come and see.

 

Just as Jesus invites John the Baptist’s disciples to come and see, He welcomes us all to do the same today. As we follow Jesus and grow to know God, we too move along the pathway from curiosity to Christoformity like those first disciples. We become more like Jesus and, like John’s two disciples, we can in turn welcome others to join us on the journey.

 

Curiosity isn’t only the first step on our journey of transformation. While it initiates our move towards Jesus, it also propels us on the path to Christoformity.

 

What is God welcoming you to get curious about?

Some questions you might ask yourself and God:

       What is God wanting to reveal to me about Himself? About myself?

       What is God inviting me to explore with Him?

       How does He want me to be in this world?

       How does Jesus offer hope and peace in uncertain times?

       ​Who does He want me to welcome on the journey?

       What does it look like for me to follow Jesus?

       What is the next step on my own path to Christ-likeness?

 

Part of our mission at ECC is to follow Jesus. We do this when we engage in the life-long pathway of transformation so that Christ is formed in us (Christoformity). Together we pursue this by intentionally engaging in spiritual formation.

 

But what IS spiritual formation you might ask?

 

For the Christian, spiritual formation is the process of participating with the Holy Spirit so that our inner world becomes formed like the inner being of Christ – for the glory of God, our own benefit, and for the sake of others.

 

For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image. 2 Corinthians 3:17-18 NLT

 

James Bryan Smith defines it as:

“Christian spiritual formation is the process

           of being formed into the image of Christ,

           through a relationship of intimacy with God,

           by the action of the Holy Spirit,

      in order to live a good and beautiful life

       of faith, hope, love, joy, and peace –

       a life that will be blessing to oneself, to others,

      and to the world, and will glorify God

      now and for all eternity.”

 

At ECC, we might say spiritual formation is the process in which we cooperate with the Holy Spirit to allow Him to transform us from curiosity to Christoformity. How can you embrace God’s invitation into a transformed life and actively participate in your own transformation?

 

God will use it all – the way He made us, the circumstances of our life, where we are on the path – He invites us to offer it all to Him and to allow Him to form us to be more like Him.

 

As we journey together on the pathway from curiosity to Christoformity, I invite you to join me in A Formation Prayer from Richard Foster’s book, Prayers from the Heart:

 

       O Lord, my God. Form me more fully into your likeness.

       Use the circumstances and interactions of this day to form your will in me.

              From the frustrations of this day form peace.

              From the joys of this day form strength.

              From the struggles of this day form courage.

              From the beauties of this day form love.

       In the name of Jesus Christ who is all peace and strength and courage and love.

       Amen.

Transformation comes when we participate with the Holy Spirit through “training our souls”. We can cooperate with the work of the Holy Spirit and train our souls by engaging in practices that create space for God to do His forming work in us.

 

Because sometimes it is hard to know where to start, ECC has created a couple of resources to help us invest in our own spiritual formation:


Connect with God through His word with resources on our Soul-Training page.

 

Connect with God in prayer with the guided prayer from the Ascension Day prayer vigil.

 

God promises transformation, and God wants your participation.